Chelsea sold Raul Meireles to Fenerbahce in the summer transfer window, his third transfer in as many years.
His new life in Turkey took an unfortunate twist at the weekend when he was sent off for a second bookable offence in the bitter clash against rivals Galatasaray at the weekend.
The referee has accused Meireles of spitting at him and making a homophobic gesture.
These are allegations the Portuguese international strongly refutes, perhaps somewhat amusingly citing his hairstyle as proof:
"I'm really annoyed at being accused of spitting at the referee. I have an eight year old kid, can you imagine if kids at school start saying your father spat at a ref, this could ruin my reputation in the eyes of my child.
"I have many gay friends who I deeply respects. The hand gesture I made is directed at the referee caving in to the pressure of the home fans.
"That hand gesture was to tell him he was scared. Look at my hairstyle, what I wear, I'm not a prejudice person, my hand gesture was in no way, shape or form a homophobic one.
"I don't know what the hand gesture for calling somebody gay is in Turkey but what I did was entirely based around the referee being a coward and bowing to the pressure.
"The referee's accusations are outrageous and are defamation, I will be taking legal action against him to prove my innocence."
Meireles could face an extended ban if the referee upholds his complaint and the Turkish FA are forced to take action.
Just this week, the English FA handed Liverpool youngster Suso a £10,000 fine for calling teammate Jose Enrique 'gay' in an ill-humoured Tweet.
image: © Ben Sutherland